Read Love and Ruin: Tales of Obsession, Danger, and Heartbreak from The Atavist Magazine by Evan Ratliff Online


Extraordinary stories of crime, passion, and adventure from The Atavist magazine, the trailblazing leader in longform narrative writing.Since its founding in 2011, The Atavist has garnered an unprecedented eight National Magazine Award nominations and was the first all-digital publication to win in feature writing. This collection presents the finest examples of a new kindExtraordinary stories of crime, passion, and adventure from The Atavist magazine, the trailblazing leader in longform narrative writing.Since its founding in 2011, The Atavist has garnered an unprecedented eight National Magazine Award nominations and was the first all-digital publication to win in feature writing. This collection presents the finest examples of a new kind of nonfiction storytelling as practiced by a young generation of longform experts. The collection includes Leslie Jamison’s landmark portrait of a lonely whale named “52 Blue,” Matthew Shaer’s harrowing account of a shipwreck during Hurricane Sandy, and James Verini’s prize-winning tale of romance and courage in Afghanistan.The fascinating and original writing in Love and Ruin demonstrates why The Atavist has become the leader in publishing “remarkable . . . can’t look away pieces of multimedia journalism” (New York Times)....

Title : Love and Ruin: Tales of Obsession, Danger, and Heartbreak from The Atavist Magazine
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780393352719
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 432 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Love and Ruin: Tales of Obsession, Danger, and Heartbreak from The Atavist Magazine Reviews

  • Lauren
    2019-02-24 16:29

    If you followed my notes and status reports, you know I *LOVED* this book. I've been looking for something like this for a long time: high-quality narrative nonfiction/longform journalism. I didn't realize, until I saw this book on the shelf at the library, that The Atavist magazine is just this sort of publication. The book is a collection of pieces from The Atavist, richly varied and immersive. There was not an overarching theme here - other than writers and journalists who like to dig in to their subjects or into history - and I really liked that. Each story was about 60-75 pages long, and served as the perfect book to carry along with me on a long trip away from home. Since each piece is truly standalone, I will offer my ratings and a few comments on each piece.Love and Ruin - 4.5 stars - American expatriates in Afghanistan - these people truly have a passion for the country, its people and its culture. 52 Blue - 5 stars (10 stars!) - My favorite of the book. The science and the culture of the very real whale who sings at a frequency that no other whale can hear. The blue whale, singing at 52 hertz is unable to communicate with fellow whales... and when this story was reported in scientific journals, what came next was truly amazing. A meditation on sound and being alone. Fort of Young Saplings - 2 stars - Unmemorable for me... Very short compared to the other stories.American Hippopotamus - 5 stars (9 stars!) - Second favorite in the book. What a crazy ride through history filled with larger-than-life (but all so real!) characters. Really loved this one!Mother, Stranger 4 stars - Sad story about the author's mother and her struggle with mental illness.When We Are Called to Part - 5 stars - A beautiful story about the remaining members of the leper colony on Moloka'i.My Mother's Lover - 5 stars - A man retraces and rediscovers the pilot who his mother fell in love with during WWII. A very poignant look at love and the long shadow of history.A Thousand Pounds of Dynamite - 2 stars - This one had an interesting plot, but failed to grab me early on. I skimmed it and skipped ahead. Other reviewers really liked it, so maybe it just wasn't the right time for me.The Oilman's Daughter - 3.5 stars - Engaging read about a woman who discovers her birth father was a wealthy Texas oilman. It became tedious in the end with all the legal suits, etc.Sinking of the Bounty - 4.5 stars - Real-life adventure story about the tall ship replica of the 18th-century HMS Bounty that set sail and ran straight into Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Stories from the survivors and the Coast Guard rescue - quite good to read. ...This is such a special book and I highly recommend it! If any of these standalone pieces sound good to you, pick up the book OR you can read them all online. Just search the title and The Atavist.

  • Stephen
    2019-03-04 16:19

    ! won this book on Goodreads!Never heard of The Atavist Magazine before I received this book. Now i check it out onlins all the time!Journalism at its finest by gifted writes.

  • Bea Bezmalinovic
    2019-03-07 21:31

    This is a print volume of stories that first appeared on the internet on (a story telling website that integrates various media in the story.) I picked the book up in Powell's in Portland, Oregon. It wasn't on my reading list, but I opened the book to a true story, "My Mother's Lover", and was hooked.My favorite story was set in Fresno, the town in California where I grew up. Jahnos (Big John) Birges, an immigrant from Hungary, settles in Fresno. As things happen in Fresno, he settles in, gets married, and has kids. He and his wife operate a restaurant, the Villa Basque. Big John's wife dies and he becomes a little (!) unhinged. He starts gambling in Tahoe at Harvey's casino and racks up $300,000 in debt. He gets mad at the casino for various reasons. So, and here is where things get crazy, he steals 1000 pounds of dynamite from a local construction site. He builds a bomb that cannot defused and persuades his sons and two other colleagues to plant the bomb at Harvey's. He asks for $2-3 million in ransom. Long story short, the FBI encases the bomb and blows it up in situ. Then, they track down Big John and everyone who helped him. They all spend time in jail. It seems a very Fresno story. Don't get me wrong, Mom. I like Fresno, but there is something about Fresno that makes one think that all kinds of things can happen there because Fresno doesn't seem short of crazy, messed up people.I like essays - Alice Munro sets the standard in my book - and I recommend this collection of offbeat essays are based on true stories, mostly about love, family, animals, and serendipity.

  • Leah
    2019-03-18 20:18

    I checked this out of the library just before the beginning of summer, but had to put it aside until I finished my summer bookbingo because it didn't fit any category. What a treasure! I can't believe my library let me renew it so many times. More people need to know about this collection of long form articles from the online magazine The Atavist.I was attracted by the cover and title, but stayed for the stories. There wasn't a dud in the bunch. Have you heard of 52 Hertz, the loneliest blue whale? What about the plan to raise hippopotamuses in Louisiana to solve the meat shortage before the advent of factory farms? Me neither, but now I do.

  • Matt
    2019-03-01 13:27

    Many of the writers involved in this book I admire and follow, so this was a disappointment. The last few stories saved the first few. I am unsure how they selected, but they need a better process because there are so many good longform stories out there... and they selected maybe, at most, one or two of them for this book.

  • Sarah
    2019-03-20 16:43

    There is bound to be an article in this you'd like. It covers memoirs, family investigation, animals, history, and crime. I have to say I enjoyed all of them. There was maybe one that at one point got a little slow but otherwise I was engaged and read through these pretty fast. It was good stuff!

  • Hayley DeRoche
    2019-03-16 21:34

    The absolute perfect read for nonfiction longread fans. The essays were almost all stellar and stayed with me (and were almost all the perfect bedtime read length), and I know I’ll be pushing this (& Atavist subscriptions) on friends and library patrons for years to come. LONGREADS FOREVER. LONG LIVE LONGREADS.

  • Rowan
    2019-03-15 15:47

    Some great essays, and some I could have done without.

  • Kate
    2019-03-14 21:43

    52: The Search for the Loneliest Whale in the WorldThere is no way to find what we've been looking for, only--perhaps--to find what that thing has become.

  • Meredith Sell
    2019-03-14 19:36

    An anthology of quality narrative nonfiction originally published in The Atavist Magazine, Love and Ruin is a collection worth your time, money, and affection. I've been following The Atavist for a while, so I was familiar with their work and had high expectations. I bought myself the book for my birthday, let it sit for a while, and finally read it from cover to cover.Each piece is focused on something entirely different. The only common thread is that described in the title and subtitle: Love and Ruin: Tales of Obsession, Danger, and Heartbreak. Each story is broken up into short "chapters" that make this easy to pick up and put down between meetings, over lunch breaks, and while traveling. The stories are distinct from each other in subject matter -- there's a story about the United States' last leper colony and one about a historic push to ranch hippopotamuses in the American Southwest (hence, the hippo on the cover). In some stories, the writer is an invisible observer. In others, he or she is part of the story. I'm a big fan of narrative nonfiction, in general, because I enjoy stories more than data points and reading true stories feels like it has more utility than a collection of fiction (though I enjoy that as well). Love and Ruin certainly delivered on my expectations. Each story read smoothly. Rarely did I ever find myself rereading the same passage over and over again because I was confused or zoned out. The stories are gripping. Each one makes you sit back and wonder, Really? This happened in real life? I intend to keep this on my shelf for a long time.

  • Lisa Raymond
    2019-02-22 15:30

    I wasn't sure what to expect from this collection of essays, as I wasn't familiar with the writers. I didn't read the book in order, but chose stories randomly. Most of the writing was thought provoking and in no way a flat, non-fiction reporting of facts. Creative non-fiction flows cleanly from beginning to end, just as these essays did. It's hard to choose a favorite out of the collection, but When We Are Called to Part by Brooke Jarvis is certainly one of the top stories. It is about the last active leprosy colony in Hawaii. Jarvis treated the residents with compassion without turning them into pitiful victims. I learned a lot, enjoyed the tutorial and admired the people involved. While I'm not sure I would read this at the beach where people could see me cry, I would recommend this book for your summer reading list. Or winter list. Or just because you like picking up a good book.

  • Kressel Housman
    2019-03-05 19:37

    This book is an anthology of articles that appeared in the online magazine “The Atavist.” I’d never heard of it before I picked up the book, but it turned out I was familiar with some of the editor’s other work: his podcast “Longform” in which he interviews journalists about their craft. Most of the stories in the collection were about quirky tidbits in history, and two were personal family stories, but the biggest page-turner was of the true crime variety. If you like slightly off-beat non-fiction, you’ll like this collection. And if you generally prefer fiction to non-fiction, you may want to try this anyway. The stories are so character-driven, even the most die-hard devotee of fiction will enjoy them.

  • Austin
    2019-03-02 21:47

    Received this in a giveaway here on Goodreads. There's some discussion in the introduction about what to call this type of writing: most of it doesn't quite feel like journalism, more like storytelling that just happens to be true. Some lean more toward memoir, while others are more like a reported magazine story. But several are unclassifiable, fascinating pieces about things I would never have guessed I'd have any interest in. Brooke Jarvis' piece about the last days of a leper colony in Hawaii, for instance -- who knew those still existed? -- is amazing and surprisingly affecting.

  • John Haake
    2019-03-09 14:19

    First of all, I must comment the whole "The Atavist Magazine" and their mission. This book was an introduction to me of their online magazine -- I hope to enjoy more from them in the future.I enjoyed each and every story in this collect for different reasons. They were all sad tales -- and I usually do not enjoy sad tales to much. This collection was the exception for me.Not only was each true tale sad, it was also weird. Each weirdness factor in each story tickled my fancy in different ways. I love the trip -- and so will you.

  • Kelly
    2019-03-21 19:26

    -36 (Book #64 explores the difference between obsession and curiosity. The true stories collected here were mostly mildly interesting, but the standout was AMERICAN HIPPOPOTAMUS by John Mooallem. Recommended only for those who enjoy history and long journalistic pieces.)

  • Sharon
    2019-03-16 17:47

    I won this book in a Goodreads contest. The stories were all interesting and well written.The collection was a mix of all different types of genres so anyone would be able to enjoy a few of the stories no matter what they liked to read.

  • Yanira
    2019-03-03 20:34

    These were really well written essays. Some had me at the edge of my seat. I really enjoyed reading these and took my time with this book. My favorite essay was the essay about a lost love during the war.

  • Cory
    2019-03-02 19:19

    Not all of these impeccably researched features were winners, but the ones that were blew me away. My favorites were The Sinking of the Bounty, When We Are Called To Part, 52 Blue and the title piece.

  • M.
    2019-03-13 17:23

    Interesting from start to finish. I won this in a contest and it was a good read. Thank you!

  • Alan Heppenstall
    2019-02-20 13:44

    Some great short stories and some not so great.

  • Jeffrey
    2019-03-23 17:18

    Contains some good pieces that made me interested in subjects I didn't think I would be.

  • Nancy Allen
    2019-03-20 21:47

    Good storiesWell told. Obviously told of real people. Gives credence to " you can't make this stuff up". Highly recommend these stories.